Apple Asks Developers to Submit watchOS Apps to Apple Watch App Store

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Apple today asked developers to begin building, testing, and submitting watchOS 6 apps for inclusion in the new standalone Apple Watch App Store.

Starting with watchOS 6, developers are able to distribute apps built solely for the Apple Watch without a companion app on iOS. Apple was not previously accepting standalone Apple Watch submissions and has also updated its watchOS site for developers.


Apple Watch apps can be installed from the Apple Watch App Store directly on the wrist even when an iPhone isn't available.
With watchOS 6, customers around the world can use the new App Store on Apple Watch to easily discover, browse, search, and install apps directly on their wrist. And for the first time, you can distribute an app just for Apple Watch, without a companion app on iOS. Build your watchOS apps using Xcode 11 GM seed, test them on devices running the latest watchOS 6 GM seed, and submit them for review.
Apple says that starting in April 2020, all new watchOS apps and app updates submitted to the App Store will need to be built with the watchOS 6 SDK and support the Apple Watch Series 4 or later.

watchOS 6 with standalone App Store is set to launch on the Series 3 and Series 4 Apple Watch models on Thursday, September 19. It will be available for Series 1 and Series 2 Apple Watch models later in the year.

The Apple Watch Series 5, which launches on Friday, September 20, will come with watchOS 6 installed.

Article Link: Apple Asks Developers to Submit watchOS Apps to Apple Watch App Store
 

thomas040

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Jan 5, 2007
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Did they have to ask them because nobody was?
I'm wondering the same thing. for some reason the whole 'running apps on your wrist' seems to be have been forgotten in a weird way, despite them launching an App Store. ... I assume they will get there eventually. The Apple Watch is going to supplant the iPhone for all of the most rudimentary tasks. It's just a matter of time.
 

handsome421

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Jun 16, 2017
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This is good. I'm hoping I get a stand alone Audible app on my watch. Syncing with the iPhone is terrible with that app.
 

gleepskip

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Apr 29, 2005
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I install apps for their complications. If I actually want to do anything, I grab my phone. I find the App Store on the watch to be pretty humorous: A store interface on a postage-stamp sized display selling postage-stamp sized apps. Discovery seems like it will be quite a challenge.
 
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Seoras

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I install apps for their complications. If I actually want to do anything, I grab my phone. I find the App Store on the watch to be pretty humorous: A store interface on a postage-stamp sized display selling postage-stamp sized apps. Discovery seems like it will be quite a challenge.
I've written two Apps which have their own Watch Apps.
Neither really makes any sense as a stand alone app as they both act as extensions of the phone app.
The biggest problem with the Watch App is that it is hard to input stuff into that little UI.
With the phone app setup and config is simple and easy - not so easy to do on a watch only app.
It is do-able but it would be more fiddly and cramped than on the phone.
I like my own watch apps, they are IMHO a nice extension and useful, but I just can't see a good reason to un-tether and release on their own.
App store on the watch is good but I see no reason why discovery and installation from there can't also install on the companion phone too.
So I'm going to do what I usual do and wait and see how this plays out and evolves.
 

CarlJ

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Feb 23, 2004
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Of course the temptation for 3rd parties to want to really monitor you (who wouldn't want to know your heart rate and give advertisements based on that) for monetization will be even greater - so Apple will have to watch apps carefully.
Heart rate and other health data, if I recall correctly, requires the user to manually approve access per-app inside the Health app on the iPhone, and Apple likely won't let apps even ask, without Apple vetting the app's need for such info first.
 

Dwalls90

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Weird that they haven't yet asked for iOS 13 apps though, seeing as WatchOS 6 and iOS 13 are both available to the public on the same date (9/19/19).
 

gleepskip

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Apr 29, 2005
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Apps need to support watch 4 or later!?! But they are only selling the 3 and 5......So one of the watches they are selling today is already on its way to not being supported :(
Gen 4 will be supported longer than gen 3.
 
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Macaholic868

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Feb 2, 2017
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I barely use watch apps. Strava is an exception and it is pretty weak.
Agreed. I use it to receive the notifications I want to receive without taking my phone out of my pocket. I’ve got the series 4 LTE version and I’ll take it with me instead of my phone from time to time feeling safe knowing I can make / receive phone calls if I absolutely needed to. I also find the maps app helpful while driving. The haptic feedback allows me to roll down my windows without worrying that I won’t hear the directions coming from my phone.
 
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s1m

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Apr 28, 2008
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Here's hoping (AGAIN!) that someone will create a true Couch-5k experience like the old "Get Running" app. I want guided training based on my actual distance, not based on a pre recorded timed audio track, and I want it all without having to take my iPhone along for the run.
Isnt the model for C25K actually a time based program?
 

Dopestar

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Oct 27, 2012
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Apps need to support watch 4 or later!?! But they are only selling the 3 and 5......So one of the watches they are selling today is already on its way to not being supported :(
It was bound to happen, this is a perfect opportunity to take advantages of the upcoming clearances that stores will have on AW4.
 

nycgeo

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Apr 12, 2005
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I barely use watch apps. Strava is an exception and it is pretty weak.
Strava would have to do better than WorkOutdoors, which I see as impossible. Thats the best exercise app and its not close! Strava has a good phone app, but the watch app is trash.
 
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